New victory ceremony protocol agreed to allow temporary removal of masks

25 Jul 2021
IOC News Tokyo 2020

It has been decided today, in line with the Tokyo 2020 Playbooks, to adapt the victory ceremony protocol in order to allow athletes to have a physically distanced image on the podium without their masks on for 30 seconds, and a group photo with masks on the gold-medal step.

skateboarding medal ceremony Tokyo 2020 2021 Getty Images

Aligned with the requirements of the Tokyo 2020 Playbooks and scientific advice, the victory ceremony protocol has been adapted to allow athletes to have an image for the media that captures their faces and their emotions during a unique moment in their sporting career, as well as to celebrate the achievements of all the medallists together.

skateboarding medal ceremony Tokyo 2020 2021 Getty Images

This new protocol started being implemented this morning and will continue to be put into practice in all venues over the coming days.

The scenario for the victory ceremony photo opportunity, post-anthem, is now the following:

1. After full completion of the anthem, while still on the podium, the athletes are invited, by a visual sign, to take off their mask for a photo opportunity for a maximum of 30 seconds.

At no point during this limited time should the athletes be invited to join each other on the gold-medal platform. They must remain on their dedicated platform respecting the original distance.

2. The athletes are invited to put their masks back on by a visual sign prior to any other photo opportunity.

3. The silver and bronze medallists join the gold medallist on the latter’s platform for a photo opportunity with masks on.

4. The medallists step down from the podium for close-up pictures wearing their masks.

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